Aboriginal people urged to have say on culture and heritage bill

Aboriginal people urged to have say on culture and heritage bill

23 February 2018 

NSW Aboriginal Land Council (NSWALC) Chair Roy Ah-See has urged Aboriginal people to have their say on a culture and heritage bill released for consultation today.

Cr Ah-See said the NSW Government would convene a number of public workshops, starting next week, on the consultation draft of the Aboriginal Cultural Heritage Bill 2018.

"Culture and heritage reform is vitally important to Aboriginal people. The current laws don't do enough to protect our culture and heritage and don't provide any decision-making rights for Aboriginal people.

"For too long the focus has been on regulating the destruction of our culture and heritage, rather than protect it for future generations.

"Every other State has stand-alone or updated Aboriginal culture and heritage legislation so it's critical that the Land Rights network and Aboriginal people engage in these workshops."

Cr Ah-See said the NSW Government must ensure there is genuine consultation on the Bill and that Aboriginal people are given adequate time to have their say.

"Unfortunately, the NSW Government has given the public barely a week to prepare for these workshops.

"The NSW Aboriginal Land Council has previously provided clear advice that at least one month's notice is given on proposed workshop dates and times.

"It's disappointing to see that our concerns were not considered and we are seeking urgent clarification from the Government on the consultation process and timetable for delivering this legislation through the Parliament."

"The New South Wales Aboriginal Land Council is committed to working with the Land Rights network to ensure that any new proposed legislation is supported by Aboriginal peoples, the Aboriginal Land Rights network and meets our principles for reform."

The workshops will be held at:

 Location

 Workshop 9.30am-2.30pm

 Venue

 Tamworth

 2 March

 Ibis Styles Tamworth, 80-90 Ebsworth Street

 Sydney

 5 March

 National Centre for Indigenous Excellence,
 180 George Street, Redfern

 Ballina

 7 March

 Ballina Surf Club, Lighthouse Pde

 Wentworth

 7 March

 Wentworth Shire Town Hall, 24 Adelaide St

 Queanbeyan

 9 March

 Riverside Oval, 14 Carinya St

 Narrabri

 9 March

 The Crossing Theatre, 114 Tibbereena St

 Penrith 

 12 March

 Penrith Panthers, 123 Mulgoa Rd

 Newcastle

 13 March

 Newcastle Museum, 6 Workshop Way

 Bourke 

 14 March

 Bourke Bowling Club, Cnr Richard and Mitchell St

 Gosford 

 14 March

 The Erina Centre, The Hive, Erina Fair

 Dubbo

 16 March 

 Taronga Western Plains Zoo, Obley Rd

 Albury

 20 March

 Albury Entertainment Centre, 525 Swift St

 Bathurst

 20 March

 Bathurst RSL Club, 114 Rankin St

 Bega

 22 March

 Bega Valley Civic Centre, Zingel Place

 Coffs Harbour

 22 March

 Coffs Harbour CEX, 1 Vernon St

 Port Macquarie

 23 March

 Port Macquarie Panthers Club, 1 Bay St

 Muswellbrook

 26 March

 Muswellbrook RSL Club, 113 Bridge St

 Broken Hill

 26 March

 Musicians Club, 276 Crystal St

 Nowra

 28 March

 Shoalhaven Entertainment Centre, 42 Bridge Rd

 Griffith

 28 March

 Aboriginal Community Centre, 5 Wiradjuri Place


To access updates and more information visit the
 "More than Flora and Fauna" page at www.alc.org.au

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Media contact: Andrew Williams 0429 585 291